top of page



On a trip through Minas Gerais, in the company of colporteur Francisco Augusto Deslandes, Rev. Armstrong arrived in Pimenta, between Formiga and Piumhi, and he arranged to hold a conference. The local priest instigated the people, who stoned the missionary and interrupted the meeting. Armstrong was greatly injured and the authorities submitted to the examination of the body of a crime. He still managed to hold a very crowded conference .

After examining him in his convictions, the Presbytery of Rio de Janeiro transferred him to the Mont-gomery Presbytery on January 13, 1894. By virtue of his wife's health problems, Rev. Armstrong retired from the third session of the Synod in 1894. Returning to the United States, to continue their pastoral work. In 1895 he served for three months at the first Scottish Presbyterian in Charleston, South Carolina. He also pastored the Presbyterian Churches of Albany (1895- 1897) and Inman Park, in Atlanta (1897-1901), both in Georgia. He died on the 23rd of August, 1901.


Harriette Armstrong returned to Brazil in 1907 with the purpose of continuing the work that her husband had interrupted because of her. She worked with the East Mission for two periods, 1907-1925 and 1936-1947. A missionary of exceptional ability, she was an organist, regent of choirs, music teacher, and director of the boarding schools, standing out for  kindness and tireless evangelistic and spiritual zeal. In 1913, she and Ruth Bosworth opened a parochial school in the small town of Bom Sucesso, which in 1921 was transferred to Campo Belo. In 1925, when Harriette because of her work, her name was given to the school (Harriette Armstrong Evangelical School). Her successor was the missionary, Susan Cockrell.  Later the East Mission transferred the "College Armstrong "to IPB; the school now belongs to the West Presbytery of Mines since 2002. At the end of their careers, Harriette and Ruth, the two inseparable companions,  initially assisted the Rev. John Marion (Mario) Sydenstricker, both of whom retired in 1947. Sick and weak, Harriette returned to the United States, where he died in 1948.


• Lessa, Annaes , 364, 462, 469, 629.

• Ferreira, History of IPB , I: 487, 489.

• A General Catalog of Union Theological Seminary in Virginia, 1807-1924 .

• Bear, Mission to Brazil , 23, 26, 106, 108, 119, 137.

• Gammon, Thus Shines the Light , 58, 66, 110.

Rev. David Gibson Armstrong

Missionary in Campinas and Lavras

David G. Armstrong Jr. was born in Salem, Virginia, on February 3, 1868. He studied at Roanoke College, in the same state, in 1885. He worked as a teacher and engineer at the Union Theological Seminary (Hampden-Sydney), where graduated in 1891. He was licensed by the Montgomery Presbytery in the first semester and ordered in September of 1891.

He arrived in Brazil the same year, accompanied by his wife, Harriette Taylor Armstrong, a native of South Carolina, whom he had married in Charleston on July 8. They worked initially in Campinas for a short time. In November of 1892, as a result of the yellow fever epidemic in that city, the missionaries moved to Lavras.

Armstrong led the group of nine people who headed south to Minas:  TheArmstrongs, teachers Charlotte Kemper, Sallie H. Chambers, and Eliza Moore Reed, and four students, one of whom was the future Rev. José Ozias Gonçalves. Harriette, known among Brazilians like Henriqueta, became director of the boarding school for girls brought to Campinas.

bottom of page